About CD-i

CD-i is short for Compact Disc Interactive. It is an interactive multimedia system combining moving and still video, audio and program content on a compact disc, which can be played back in a dedicated CD-i player. A CD-i player is a stand-alone device, consiting of a CPU, memory and an integrated operating system. It operates on its own and it can be connected to a standard TV-set for displaying pictures and sound, and optionally to a stereo-system. All system interactivity is generated by positioning a cursor using an X/Y pointing device (such as a remote control with a pointing device, a mouse or a game controller), and clicking options using one of the two provided action buttons.

CD-i was jointly developed by Philips Electronics NV and Sony Corporation in the mid 80s. Together, both companies defined CD-i's basic specifications in what is known as the Green Book. They decided to use the well-tested OS-9 operating system from Microware Systems Corporation, which was designed for embedded, real-time applications. Microware was also heavily involved in the CD-i design process. Eventually, Philips took the biggest part in the development process, being responsible for at least 90% of CD-i's development.

The above is mostly taken from the CD-i FAQ 2000 Edition on the ICDIA website, where much more information can be found.

The CD-i system, while initially appearing promising, was ultimately not commercially successful and sales and marketing were subsequently discontinued. The last batch of CD-i players was manufactured in June 1999. CD-i players and many titles can still be found in the various online auction sites, there are now even some new CD-i titles being developed. It is hoped that the availability of CD-i Emulator will breathe new life into what was the first truly consumer-oriented interactive multimedia platform.